- The New York Stock Exchange is prepared for the possibility that someone working on its trading floor may contract coronavirus, said NYSE President Stacey Cunningham.
- If the floor had to close, trading could resume electronically.
- If necessary, the exchange is prepared to clean the floor and reopen quickly, Cunningham said.
What would happen if the New York Stock Exchange floor is forced to closed?
For decades, the NYSE has had contingency plans to continue to operate in the event the floor might have to close. At one point, there was even a “mirror” floor in Brooklyn.
Today, the NYSE has plans to continue to operate electronically should the floor need to close. Last weekend, the NYSE conducted a test of its trading systems to ensure they could open electronically without the floor.
How would the NYSE do that? NYSE President Stacey Cunningham, in an interview Thursday, emphasized there were no plans to close the floor yet but said containment steps had already been taken.
“There’s a spectrum of plans that we could roll out at any time,” she said. “And so, we’ve already taken some steps to limit exposure in the building just by separating people and separating communities, so that the people on the trading floor aren’t interacting with people on other floors, and we don’t have guests coming onto the floor. Those are just precautions so that we can limit the likelihood that there is an outbreak.”
Like many organizations, the NYSE has also arranged for employees not working on the floor to work from home.
Cunningham said the NYSE was prepared for the possibility that someone at the exchange or who works on the floor may contract coronavirus: “If there is an outbreak, we can clean the floor and reopen pretty quickly as well, so that’s something we’re not planning to close the floor at this time, but as you mentioned, we could trade fully electronically.”